Lots growing for Edible Schoolyard!
There is so much going on with Edible Schoolyard! Read all about it.
Chef in the Garden at Pittsburgh Colfax
Now that the Colfax School summer garden is producing lots of food, the question becomes: What do we do with the harvest? One way Edible Schoolyard Pittsburgh and its partner Colfax School have addressed that question is by hosting an annual event called Chef in the Garden. During this event, four professional chefs set up a portable kitchen in the garden space, and teach a cooking lesson where they demonstrate how to utilize food grown right in our garden, in order to prepare a healthy and delicious dish. During each lesson the chefs explain each step of the recipe along with the thinking behind their creations, and students get to assist in the preparation. The chefs also facilitate discussion along the way to teach about what it’s like to be a professional chef. At the end of each lesson, the students get to taste a sample of what they have made together, take the recipe home and hopefully find a new healthy food option. This dynamic annual event has been a fixture of Edible Schoolyard Pittsburgh’s programming.
This year, Chef in the Garden took place on Thursday 9/10 and Friday 9/11. On Thursday morning, Chef Chris Bonfili, owner and head chef of restaurants Avenue B and B Gourmet, led three classes through his recipe for Summer Vegetable Succotash. The students loved trying the new dish. One student, Fikru, told Chef Chris, “At first I thought I wouldn’t like eggplant, but I totally do.” Another student Madeline remarked to her friends, “Oh my gosh, I might have to have another serving!” The next chef on day one was John Karbowski, who works with Parkhurst Dining. He planned a recipe for Watermelon Salad with Arugula. The students got to assist with each step of the way, from cubing water melon, all the way to serving the dish to a classmate.
On Friday morning, another Chef from Parkhurst Dining, Tim Fetter, came and led his classes through the process of preparing his Sweet Corn Soup. He even brought an ear of corn for each student to participate in a corn husking race, which he enjoyed winning each time, as expected. The last chef for the event, also from Parkhurst Dining, Zachary Puhala, came prepared to make Sweet Potato Pancakes. During his lessons, the students asked him great questions about how he decided to become a chef, if he ever makes noodles, and whether or not he has a friend at work.
When all was said and done, approximately 140 students from grades K-3 got to participate in this amazing event. The vast majority of students responded positively to trying the new dishes and will hopefully consider that when they are choosing what to eat for themselves, as evidenced by one student who boldly asked the principal, Dr. Woods, “Can we have this on our lunch menu?”